Construction is booming in Boston – 5 things you should know

by Peter Thomas Ricci

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In case you haven’t noticed, Greater Boston is experiencing a building boom – its biggest in decades, and one that will profoundly shape the tone and character of the metro area in the decades to come.

The latest housing report from RealtyTrac examined the scope of the building boom, and below, we have collected the most incredible stats it cited:

1. There is currently 14 million square feet of construction underway in Greater Boston.

2. There are now 83 major projects going up in 19 of the city’s 25 neighborhoods, and they are collectively worth roughly $7 billion.

3. Since 2011, the number of new home building permits has more than doubled, skyrocketing from 6,139 to 15,036 in 2015 – and in the first half of 2016, developers filed 5,419 more permits. Here is a more detailed breakdown:

4. Superlative demand is driving construction. One of the boom’s most visible developments, Millennium Tower in the city’s downtown, is already 95 percent sold (its 442 luxury condos range in price from $1.1 million for one-bed condos to penthouses, which start at a whopping $7 million).

5. Despite all the downtown development, perhaps no neighborhood better exemplifies the building boom than South Boston. Once a working-class neighborhood with a gritty reputation – the infamous criminal James “Whitey” Bulger grew up there – the area has now been “wholly gentrified,” in the words of the report, and the Boston Redevelopment Authority has approved 52 projects in the neighborhood and 36 more along its waterfront area.

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